MIMA Insight System

MIMA Insight System
New MIMA plug in system

Cable impedance problem with last MIMA systems.

click to expand
Where to make the connections
As many of you know, we had a rash of bad behavior when the last 25 MIMA systems were installed. Turned out we got some bad DB-25 cables, that had extremely high (8-20 ohm) end to end resistance. The cables were replaced with some 10 foot DB-25 that had normal less than one ohm end to resistance, and we thought we were home free, but found that more strange behavior was still happening.
Some care full scope troubleshooting showed that the 20 KHZ MAMODE signals were not making it up to 5 V, because the rising edge was being rounded by the long cable impedance. The stock cables show some of this effect, but the much longer path and higher capacitance that the DB-25 presents was just enough to further slow the rise time so the car was only intermittently seeing the signals, as they did not rise into the high state. After two sets of cables, And the increasing difficulty in getting shorter and larger conductor cables, I found that simply adding a parallel pull up resistor to the 5V at the MCM brought the rise times back in line with the stock signals without the MIMA harness. All the problems went away, so this should fix the problem,and not let the high speed signals be so effected by small capacitance and resistance variables.

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Quick way to make a connector for checking the subpacks

Quick way to make a connector for checking the subpacks
Battery tap rotary switchvoltage tap reader
After several hours of trying to find the BCM connector that is the mate for the battery tap harness connector,I gave up.
Using a pack that had no cells,so the connector would not have power.
I took a small clear plastic bag, and carefully taped the cut up bag over the harness connector,and secured it with black tape near the base, where the wires come out.
Next I inserted the pins pulled from one of the 104Pin headers used in the MIMA plug and play adapter, through the plastic into the harness connector female pins.
Making sure that the pins were inserted fully,I covered the plastic covered connector with epoxy putty, allowing the pins to stick through the epoxy.
I taped the epoxy with black tape to hold the shape.
When the epoxy cured,I soldered a ribbon cable to the pins, making the order of the ribbon follow the taps from the - end to the HV + end in sequence.
An aluminum duct tape dam that was adhered to the epoxy, made a cavity on the rear where the ribbon attached to the pins.The cavity was filled with hot melt, casting the wires and pins in place.
I put a 12 pin .1" OC straight male header on the other end of the ribbon.
The voltage taps can be read here, or I can plug in another female 12 Pin header, also attached to a ribbon, into a pill bottle(it was handy).
I mounted a 20 position break before make dual pole rotary switch on the base of the pill bottle, and two terminals on the cap for the volt meter.
I also made the conector for a civic pack, that plugs into the same female header on the rotary switch /pill bottle, so the same switch can do either.
To use it, one unplugs the voltage tap connector from the pack, and attached a voltmeter to the two pill cap terminals, and I can monitor each 12 cell stick , in sequence, as well as the whole pack voltage.
It took less time to build than I spent looking for the connector, and It can do both a civic and insight.
The connector plugs in reliably and securely, after the plastic is removed.
Not pretty, but it works well and is pretty rugged and safe.

Lifting the battery safely

Lifting the battery safely
Some insight battery pack lifting options
As anyone that has pulled the battery pack on their insight can tell you, it is just heavy enough to hurt your back, and it requires you to lift in a very awkward position. Honda has a special lifting frame that the techs use, so I thought that with the requirement that one pulls the Insight pack to do a clean grid charger install,it was time to see if a quick and dirty version of the lifting frame could be fabricated.
Randall sent me a photo of one he made, using some handles, and a piece of plywood.

I made one with long handles, that allow comfortable lifting angles, and full control of the pack while removing or installing.

Reading the blink codes

Reading the blink codes
how to read blink codes
While most of the nice OBDII code readers can tell us which P code is causing a check engine or IMA light, it cannot tell us the subcode ( Blink code).
The photo shows which pins need to be shorted together on the Insight OBDII plug to have the car report the blink subcodes.
Short with wire and the codes are reported.

When reading the IMA blink codes, the IMA light blinks and if the check engine light is on, it will blink
Example: a 74 IMA code would be 7 slow blinks, and 4 fast blinks, if there is more than one code, the blinking will have a long pause, and then blink out the second code.It will cycle through all the codes in a circular fashion. Say there was a 74, and a 78, and a 63. The IMA light would bilnk the 74, then the 78, then the 63, and then start back with the 74 and repeat until you release the short.

Blink codes:
Blink codes page 1
Blink codes page 2
Blink codes page 3

Taking Video of the dash

Taking Video of the dash
Car monopod
When shooting the MIMA video, I needed a way to hold the camcorder so it would shoot the dash display,with no hands, as I needed both to drive the car.
I cut an oak board in a triangular shape with two soft rubber feet for the driver door side,and a square shape that fit into the steel square tube on the other. A locking screw was made by welding a nut over a clearance hole on the end of the square tube. It works just like a tripod leg. The telescoping arm is put between the two front doors and forced open so it presses against each, then lock it.
A tripod head was attached so the camera can look at the dash while driving.
The MIMA videos were shot using this technique.

Learning to drive with MIMA

OK, MIMA is installed, Now how do I work this thing???
How do I use it for better MPG???

Some tips and suggestions:
MIMA for beginners PDF by Ray Holan

Getting Familiar with MIMA
Just use the joystick at first to see how the extra assist and regen works and feels, and use it to run your battery up and down to see how that works.

Get a feel for max assist in all gears, feel max regen in each gear.
Get in an open parking lot, and with the engine idling, let up the clutch and cruise with engine at idle. Foot off the gas. Use MIMA to accelerate the car and decelerate the car. This works all the way up to third.
Get back on the road, and run your battery gauge up to the top with regen, and avoid assist, until you get the SOC gauge to the top. Then use assist a lot until the battery runs to the bottom and starts to limit assist.
Bring the SOC back to the middle and you are ready to try boosting your MPG.

Always blend the assist with a slight increase in gas to accelerate. Use too little gas, and you are not at the optimum efficiency point on the gas side. Except for the parking lot fun, never use assist without also using gas, at least drop the MPG down into the 100MPG range. This gets the gas engine so it is producing power for the gas that is burned.
If you try to do it with all electric you will deplete your battery quickly.(Lead finger syndrome) The trick is to meter in just enough assist as required to maintain best efficiency of electric and gas power plants.

Hills are everywhere around here.
The best technique for using MIMA on hills depends on the hill.
The guys in mountains that look at our hills call them bumps.
The small battery packs in the Insight will give between 3 and 10 minutes of very strong assist.
That can be stretched to forever if that energy is used wisely.
The guys that have a 8000 foot climb to work, verses the CT highways with their rolling hills, San Fransisco, Florida.

The flatlanders:
On flat areas we have a predictable load on the power plant, with accelerations and decelerations the main areas where MIMA can help. A slight background charge with ABC to trickle energy into the pack, and shots of assist whenever a slight hill or overpass comes up, and a shot when you need to accelerate slightly, can add up to a nice MPG boost.
Keep the pack in the top area, but do cycle it occasionally to "blow out dendrites" and keep the pack strong.

The hills:
You know the terrain, you must learn to meter out the assist where it will do the most good, and how to be a regenmaster.
You must balance the gas and electric efficiently, with an eye on the maintenance of a charge on the HV battery.
OK, I admit the maintenance of a charge when that MIMA joystick is right there is a hard one.
You must be a regenmaster, and like a Jedi warrior, learn to use every opportunity to grab any wasted energy you can, but only in a way that will maintain the best MPG. A Zen meditation for sure!

Some sources of wasted energy:
Engine breaking
Idling or driving with very light loads
Using the hydraulic brakes
acceleration of mass
deceleration of mass

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The FAS system

The FAS system
Old and new FAS
While MIMA and careful driving technique can yield some very impressive MPG,we have found that another simple modification can also boost the MPG even more.
We call it the FAS mod.
The Insight has a built in function called Autostop, which turns off the engine when you stop at a light. If you shift into neutral, clutch in, it can happen at up to 19 MPH. The Insight with electric power steering does not require the engine to be turning for power steering to work, and the vacuum boosted brakes have enough vacuum reserve to give several braking cycles. The engine is restarted automatically if you step on the accelerator, shift into gear, or the brake vacuum has dropped to a level where the vacuum boost does not have sufficient vacuum.
All of these features make the car very safe during engine off coasting.
An early MIMA user Calpod, was the first to tap into the fuel injector system with a momentary manually activated switch system that cut fuel to the engine by disconnecting the fuel injectors. A second switch simulated the clutch being pressed.
This combination allowed him to cut the engine by temporarily starving it of fuel until it stalled, simulating autostop at any speed.
Using this technique all of the safety systems for restarting the engine remained functioning, since the fuel cut was via a momentary switch.
The down side of this system was that he had to switch the clutch sw manually, and the 12V charging system was disabled during the FAS cycle.
Another MIMA user Highwater, further developed the FAS system by automating the clutch simulation switch with relays, and tied in the neutral switch to get the system back to normal operation when the gear shift was moved from the neutral position. Two wires were run to the rear IMA system to keep the 12V dc/dc charging system on while in the FAS cycle.
Many Insight drivers were interested in this FAS system, so I offered a hand made FAS relay system.
As part of the new MIMA build where I required some new PC boards, I turned the FAS system into a PC board with miniature PC board mounted relays.
The FAS PC version is offered as part of the MIMA system as a $120 option, and will be wired to the ECM plug in adapter.
The FAS board is available as a separate item,which will work exactly the same as when in the MIMA system but instead of being inte3grated into the ECM plug in adapter,you will need to hardwired
to the ECM harness.
The control input, and two dc/dc enable wires will need to be extended so the dc/dc can run to the rear of the car.
The FAS control wire can be extended to reach where you mount the FAS Normally Open momentary push button switch,the other terminal of the switch goes to chassis ground.

The separate FAS is $125 which includes postage and the extended DC/DC wires, with momentary switch.

What to expect after FAS install:

1. When the engine goes off with FAS, at speeds higher than 19 mph, the engine oil light comes on. That's normal. The oil light turns off when the engine comes back on.Use this as your FAS active indication.

2. To stop the engine with the momentary switch you have to hold the switch for a second or two. If the momentary contact is too short, the engine just rev's immediately back to up to idle speed.Hold it until you are sure the engine has stopped.

3. While the FAS operation simulates autostop with all the safety feachers it does not actually initiate a real autostop with the autostop light flashing etc.

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Real time external MPG display

Real time external MPG display
Rear Real Time MPG display
Back in 2002, I decided that I wanted to let the other drivers on the road know what I was getting for MPG.
I mounted a tiny color video camera on a bent piece of solid # 14 wire, which I stuck into the slot between the dash bezel and the steering column bezel. The camera was carefully focused so that only the bargraph and MPG displays were in the field of view. I made a waterproof rear LCD video display and fed the video signal to the monitor.
It was a bit too dark for full sunlight viewing, but was quite readable under most other conditions.
I hated it. I felt compelled to drive in my most efficient way, since everyone was watching, and finally took it out for that reason. Now if I were a hard core hypermiler that always got super numbers, it would have been another story.This was before MIMA, so maybe I need to dig it back out?


Soon after Yves and I got MIMA to work, I built MIMA L, which I used for several months. MIMA L allows manual control of the IMA, or defaults back to stock operation.I put up a schematic of this simplest MIMA circuit for all that wanted to build their own MIMA.

The photo is my first MIMA, which I used for several months.
This page will showcase some of their systems.
If you have built your own MIMA system, and would like to be included on this page, just let me know, and send me some photos.
Mikes breadboard MIMA L

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Auto brake light

Auto brake light
MIMA regen auto brake light
Calpod asked that a regen based brake light activation be designed for MIMA equipped Insights, as the car can slow down pretty fast if full regen is applied.
Without the brake lights to warn the guy behind you that you are slowing down, you could get rear ended if he is not awake.
The software is already working, and the Violet MIMA aux wire will pull low when the regen is greater than 15A.
The problem was how to interface to the car. If the brake switch was shorted by a relay, that would work, but as soon as the brake light is activated, the car will try to apply full regen, as that signal feeds to the MCM.
In looking at the schematics, I chose the connector in the passenger side B column as the best place to tie in. This spot is where the drive signal for the high mounted brake light is located. With this circuit, only the high mounted brake light will activate when MIMA or the car is over 15A of regen.
Any small 12V relay with SPDT contacts should work.

Insight Battery pack turbo cooler

Insight Battery pack turbo cooler
Insight Battery Turbo Cooler
As any owner will tell you, when you are pumping charge in and out of the pack with MIMA, it can get hot, especially in summer. The battery is cooled with a two speed fan that draws air into the battery pack from behind the passenger seat inlet vent.MIMA will force the two fans on at full speed when the temperature of the battery gets over 95F.
I made a Turbo Cooler for my pack by ducting the passenger foot AC outlet to the battery pack input duct. I set the fan on high, and the duct to foot only. The driver side vent is ducttaped over, so that all the air comes out of the passenger side.
The increased air flow helps a lot, with mild MIMA use, but if you are really pushing the hybrid ratio to the electric side, the pack can still get into the 100 F range. Because of the large thermal mass of the heavy batteries, it takes a lot to cool them even a few degrees. To Turbo Cool the pack, I wait till I am going down hill, so the power is nearly free, and turn on the AC to full, set to 60 F. A long hill and you can cool the pack several degrees.

MIMA introduction

MIMA introduction
The path into the future
What is MIMA what does it mean in MPG to change the hybrid mix to predominantly electric. If all the cars on the road today were to be converted to electric tomorrow, the batterys would take 20 years to make, with production of some of the rare raw materials being the limiting factor. Hybrids will be the transition automobile to a future of light weight commuter cars that are fast safe and super efficient, powered completely by home solar recharging.

All production Hybrids computer controll the mix of gas to electric, so they are Automatic hybrids.
We have to break the mold, and rethink the way we build cars. MIMA is a step in that direction. MIMA allows the driver to be the boss, a true Manual Hybrid.

Since the beginning of regular automobile use, the automakers have settled into a fairly universal way for us to operate the car. The first cars had no steering wheels, they had control sticks that steered and accelerated the car, then came steering wheels, lights, clutches, brakes, the familiar foot throttle, wipers, and finally the configuration settled down to what we are all so familiar with now, with our only choice of interface being automatic or manual transmissions. The automatic transmission was the first time that we gave up one of the controls, and let the car do it "automatically", even if the result was less mileage. We still have the choice to buy a manual transmission, but are gradually going to find that the automakers want to make only one transmission, and it will be automatic, so our choice may soon to be taken away.

In 2000, the Honda Insight Hybrid and then the Toyota Prius Hybrid cars became available, and to my dismay, there was no driver control for this second "free" source of power. Here we had a new opportunity for the superior skills that humans could bring to the control and balancing of the electric gas ratio, for optimum performance in acceleration or efficiency, depending on the need.
Some may correctly argue that many drivers could not come close to understanding how to mix the gas and electric, and are better off with the car doing it's thing.
I am not talking about those people, I am talking about the people with good driving and awareness skills that can and do learn how to use the available controls to best advantage.

What ever the automakers reasons were, (I am sure there were many) they chose not to offer us an opportunity to control this very important ratio manually.
A new control system was forced onto us, the automatic hybrid .
The electric to gas ratio on todays hybrids are controlled by supposedly smart computer controls.
Can the computer see the road ahead ? We can.
We have a brain that far exceeds the power of the on board microcontroller at making subtle determinations, and we can learn what works best, not fuzzy logic like the insight likely uses.
Is it smart to charge the batteries while going up hill? My stock Insight does that.
Is it smart to force me to drop from 100 mpg down to 50 before I get any electric assist to top the small hill I am on? These and many other quirks of the control system in the car are begging for a fix.

I created MIMA to give us a shot at making the Insight better, by creating a Manual Integrated Motor Assist
With MIMA, and the Honda Insight, we may have our only shot at experiencing this level of manual user control of the hybrid mix, as the automakers do not seem to be moving in this direction in their new hybrid offerings, and the communication between modules are moving into a networked serial communication control system which is more difficult to crack.
If the automakers were to give us an option, a direct connection into the main control system of the car, for those wanting to make the car better. A PC interface complete with control language specifications.
This PC interface would allow the millions of highly trained hardware and software engineers that drive their car to work and back each day, all over the world, to tune the car to his particular commute and driving style.
Through a collaborative effort of the users of MIMA, and the programming skills of many of the users, we hope to show clearly that the human operator needs to be part of the hybrid control system, at least until cars can see and have artificial intelligence. MIMA definable manual and automatic control of the electric drive, should be an option on all hybrid cars.
Gas priority system (Automatic HHI)
With the stock Insight IMA system, one must press down on the gas, lowering the MPG from say 100MPG to 50MPG before the electric drive engages to assist in the acceleration or hill climb. You have no choice, as the HHI or Hybrid Human Interface has been strictly defined by the cars software. The batteries may be fully charged, but you cannot use just the electric to get over the hill even small ones.

Electric priority system (Manual HHI)
A careful analysis of the inter-module signals of the Insight has led to a fairly simple modification that allows full manual control of both the charging and assist IMA functions. MIMA can let the driver maintain high mpg, while manually controlling the electric assist to climb a hill with full electric assist, or 14,400 watts (144V X 100A). At this rate The 6.5AH capacity cells can not provide climbing power for long before being depleted. More aggressive assist, means that the charging must be more aggressive as well. With MIMA, the driver becomes part of the battery charge maintenance system, either manually by stopping with the full MIMA recharging of 7200 watts (144V X 50A), or automatically as he lifts the throttle past the charge activation set point. The maximum charge is no more aggressive than if you touched the brakes during an off ramp deceleration, or braking down a hill, and the assist is no stronger than full throttle take offs in first or second. The difference is that we can maintain the full assist or recharging with the MIMA controller.

The forced recharge of the battery in normal IMA mode is limited to 10-12 A of charge when the stock automatic system decides it is time to charge. Once the system decides it is charge time, it will charge continuously even while climbing a gentle hill, and therefore puts a constant load on the engine, when many times it would be better not to. This background load makes maximum MPG difficult or impossible to achieve . With MIMA, the charging can be accomplished at up to 50A of charge, when the situation allows it, at driver discretion, with minimal effect on MPG. Proportional down hill charging allows maintenance of speed without using brakes, during deceleration the aggressive charging can transform more of the kinetic energy into charge before the mechanical brakes are needed for the final stop. When climbing hills the background 10-12A charge can be switched off to maximize MPG. Only time will tell how far the MIMA system will be developed, meanwhile lets enjoy the possibilities.

The end of the Plug and Play MIMA, and MIMA2

The end of the Plug and Play MIMA, and MIMA2
we can make 13 more
Stay tuned for future developments.

Waiver of Liability
Transfer of Ownership
contact us
Paypal account # 99mpginsight@charter.net

The Plug and Play MIMA systems are no longer available.
I have canceled my plans to build a MIMA2 version of the device.

Peter Perkins in the uk is selling a system that had MIMA control over the IMA, and includes other cool OBDII monitoring and control functions
Have fun and be green.



The Microprocessor and many of the other components of the MIMA controller board are static sensitive devices. The new Microprocessor is shipped in a special static protective case. Leave it in the case until ready to install.
In the summer months static is not much of an issue as the humidity is quite high, but in winter, Rh can be down to only a few %, and static build up is a real problem.
When you get the shift console open, and get ready to remove the MIMA connectors and board, make sure that you first touch any metal part of the car to discharge any static that you may have picked up.
Remove the MIMA board from the car, and if possible wrap it in a static protective covering of conductive plastic designed for that purpose. This plastic is the type that computer boards are wrapped in. If you do not have access to that, be careful to hold the board from the edges. Find a flat work area indoors,again discharge any static charge that you may have developed by touching a grounded metal object (water fawcet) with the other hand. With a small flat blade screwdriver, carefully pry the old Micro out of the socket, being very careful to extract it straight out, by prying first one edge, then the other until it is free.
The packing matrial and envelope that the MIMA processor is shipped in, can be reused if opened by slitting the aluminum tape across the top. A new piece of foil tape is included in the package, that can be folded over the top to reclose.
The new chip is held in the black plastic case with some black conductive foam. A piece of white electrical tape attached to the black foam allows the foam and micro to be removed from the case to allow easy separation from the foam. Carefully take the micro out of the foam, and while observing the direction of the notch,(pin 1) and assuring that all of the pins are aligned with the socket holes, press it fully into the socket. If you bend a pin, you may be able to straighten it out, but utmost care should be exercised to avoid bending it, as the pin will break off if bent more than 2 or 3 times. Place the old Micro in the foam in the box,and save it in the shipping envelope until a new version of the code is available. Carefully replace the board in the car, again discharging any static on your body with the other hand before attaching it to the mounting bracket.
Plug in all the connectors, and off you go with the new MIMA software.

The MIMA Display

The MIMA Display
The MIMA display, is as low a profile as possible, places the mode leds at both sides and one in the middle so that the mode is easier to recognize when it is dark. the display board is in the middle of the ribbon cable on its way to the controller.
The wires routing is completely hidden.

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MIMA Install Day 2005 a Big Success!

MIMA Install Day 2005 a Big Success!
November 2005 - By John Waiveris, Photos by Jamie Hodgson and John Waiveris, Quotes from owners on install day.

"Esoteric vehicle...but one I wouldn't want to live without." - Brian Hardegen from MA, Winner of the 2005 Tour De Sol Monte Carlo Rally (94 mpg in a MIMA modified Honda Insight)

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The MIMA Joystick

The MIMA Joystick
New joystick
The MIMA joystick provided with the Plug and Play harness has a leather cover, and plastic shroud surrounding the joystick board.
This covers the switches and circuit board, and provides a better looking and dust free protection for the bare board.
I show the shift lever and e-brake mounting positions for the joystick in the install instructions, but the epoxy putty allows you to mount anywhere in the car.

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Installing MIMA with The Plug and Play harness

Installing MIMA with The Plug and Play harness
MIMA interconnects
Dec 16 2008
The 29 systems that have been ordered and paid for have been shipped.
I have two more orders that I will be testing in the next day or so
All of the shipped systems have full install instructions included on the new plug and play video, which you should watch before attempting to do the install. I hurried to put together the video so a few things were overlooked or not explained well enough.
The web based instructions will try to serve two purposes. One being a complete printable version of the instructions that you can bring to the car. Second, a place where I can go into more detail on the sections of the video that were weak.

These instructions will refer to the latest and easiest to install MIMA harness.
This hand built harness is composed of several circuit boards and interconnect cables that allow MIMA to be plugged in and removed quickly, and do it in a mechanically and electrically sound way as to not interfere with the cars signals.

All of the signals between the ECM and its harness, and the MCM and it's harness pass through the two MIMA plug in adapters. If any wires were crossed, it could easily damage the controllers.
I personally test each plug in adapter input to confirm that it goes to the correct output and for shorts to other wires.

All of the MIMA connections are made on the ECM, Distribution, and MCM cards.
I also test the complete MIMA part of the harness to confirm that those lines are correctly connected.

I test each cable or ribbon, both separately and fully connected with the other boards and harnesses.

With this degree of testing, as long as you make sure that the connectors are plugged in fully, and the ribbon cables are not strained at the ends, or pinched between metal, there is no need for any further testing on your end, just plug in the adapters gently run the ribbons and DB-25 cables, and when it is all plugged in, You should be ready to roll with no issues. If something unexpected happens, call me, and I will work with you to resolve the problem.

As a last feature, I bring the extra conductors in the ECM ribbon and the MCM DB-25 cable to the distribution card, so any signal on either card can be sent to the distribution card.
This card has a breadboard area right where we have access to all the cars signals, as well as the MIMA signals, so it can be the basis of a much expanded computer interface to the car, while remaining a plug and play system.LCD displays, Data loggers, PC interface, bluetooth, are only a few of the possibilities.

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Installing MIMA with the pin replacement harness

Installing MIMA with the pin replacement harness
Connector locations
This set of instructions is for MIMA systems #28 to system # 58
The pin replacement plug in MIMA installation is easier than the original cut and splice system that was used on the first 30 systems. The new harness is plugged into the existing connectors a pin at a time. The old pin is removed with tools that I provide, and the MIMA harness pin adapter is inserted in the connector in it's place. In most cases the old pin/stock harness wire is just plugged into the MIMA adapter pin and that connection is done.
To remove the system, is just a matter of removing the adapter pin and plugging the stock pin back in.
The video has grown to 1.6G, or 1:45. Besides the install video, it includes operation and testing, as well as on the road video of MIMA on demand, MIMA active, ABC, and PIMA in action, as well as calibrate and option selections.
I will be sending a DVD with a WMV file format of the instructions to recent MIMA buyers that have requested one. It is crude and rude, and can get long here and there, but I have presented a lot of helpful information that can make your MIMA experience a better one.
I will produce a better one when I get some time.

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MIMA Operation

MIMA Operation
MIMA for beginners PDF by Ray Holan

MIMA/PIMA allows access to three added levels of control of electric assist and recharging (regen) available to the IMA system, to greatly enhance the Insight's efficiency and fuel economy. MIMA/PIMA also increases the amount of electronic assist and regen available for faster acceleration and more efficient battery management. Cars do not "see" hills, traffic controls, traffic conditions, weather, etc., but you do... The first level provides you with basic control of your IMA system. The second level provides you with complete control of your IMA system. The third level allows you to simply program your IMA system for your personal driving habits, traffic, and driving and seasonal conditions for hands free operation. Any changes you may wish to make to your program can be done simply while driving along, only takes a moment. And should you ever wish to do so, you can return to standard IMA mode with the flip of a switch while either driving along or stopped.

Default mode:
The car starts in the standard IMA mode, just as though MIMA was not installed. Joylock and FAS features are available in both MIMA modes and are simply explained on page two.

MIMA on demand:
When in Default Mode, if you move the joystick forward to the assist direction, the system switches to MIMA active mode or mode 1, and will activate the electric motor in proportion to how much you move the joystick. Return the joystick to center and the system reverts to standard IMA mode. Move the joystick rearward in the charge direction, again switching to MIMA active, and charging will occur in proportion to how much you move the joystick.

MIMA active:
You enter this mode by a fast tap of the mode 1 button. In this mode, the standard IMA system is off, and even if the batteries need charge, or you accelerate at maximum, the IMA will not respond. This is good, as it lets you use the full power of the gas engine for cruising, rather than sharing power with the battery charging. Once the engine load is low, an adjustable background charge can be set to come on, be adjusted to a different level, or turned off all automatically. Of course, the joystick can still control both assist and charging in this mode.

You enter this mode by a tap of the mode 2 button. PIMA is very similar to the standard IMA mode, with the major difference being that you can set the point of activation of both assist and regen, as well as determine how aggressively the assist increases as you press down further on the throttle. In the standard IMA, as you press down on the throttle, and the engine load increases, you reach a point where the electric motor begins to provide power to help the gas engine. PIMA allows adjustment of that activation point.
Charging in the standard IMA is activated when the brakes are applied, or if the charge is low, the system will charge constantly (except at heavy ICE load) at a rate of 10-20Amps. In PIMA, charging is activated when the MPG reaches the adjustable charge set point, and gets stronger in proportion to the difference between the set point and the actual MPG. If the set point is at 100MPG, charge will reach full at ~ 150MPG.

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Theory of Operation

The Honda Insight was introduced in this country in 2000, in a rushed development to beat Toyota to the American market with the first production Hybrid. The control system of the Insight is made up of a modular programming jack and the availability of an inexpensive program configuration with comparatively simple communication between the modules. MIMA _L was the first system to hijack the control signals concerning the assist and charge functions, and was fabricated with only a few chips. The three signals that communicate to the MCM what the ECM wants for assist or charging, is the basis of MIMA.

1. The MAMODE 1 signal is a 20 khz pulse train that is sent from the ECM to the MCM, and sits at about 50% duty cycle when no assist is requested. The duty cycle shifts to 25% duty when full assist is requested. It was found that forcing this signal to 25% duty cycle was all that was needed to enable full assist, but this signal alone will not allow control of the actual assist level, rather acting only as an enabler.

2. MAMODE 2 signal is a simple logic signal that is pulled high in the MCM. The ECM will pull this line low when assist of any level is requested, so it is the first enabler of assist, with the MAMODE 1 duty cycle shift as the full assist enabler.

3. CMD PWR is a 2 KHZ variable duty cycle signal that is the main control signal for the level of assist or charging . This signal duty cycle drops to 10 % duty at full charging, and raises to 90% duty cycle for full assist.

If either of the MAMODE 1 or the CMDPWR signals are missing when the car starts, or during operation, the IMA fault indicator will illuminate and disable the complete IMA system. A MCM reset will correct this condition.

The MIMA system breaks the path from the ECM to the MCM for the MAMODE1, and the CMDPWR signals, with relays that reconnect the cars stock signals when deactivated.

To keep the control logic to the simplest form when in MIMA active mode, MIMA simply replaces the MAMODE1, and CMDPWR signals with replacement signals that change duty cycle under the Joystick control.

Soon it became obvious that with the more aggressive use of assist and recharging functions that MIMA allowed, battery and power electronics were caused to run on the hot side, and it was found that the cooling fans were not turned on early enough and were turned off during autostop. Temperature probes were installed into the battery pack and onto the heat sink of the MPI. The fans were brought under MIMA control through a diode "or" configuration, that allows all fans to operate normally under the car's normal control systems, and allows MIMA to turn them both on full. MIMA will activate the fans when either the Battery or MPI heat sink get to over 95 degrees.

The assist charge display of the Insight gives only an approximate indication of current going into or out of the battery, so a tap into the battery current sensor allows MIMA to more accurately measure the battery current and display it in real time on the battery amp LEDs. In the future, this will allow MIMA to compute SOC of the battery since it is monitoring the same battery current signal that the BCM is when making the SOC determinations. This allows for independent determination of the SOC.

To allow more possibilities for the use of the new level of control that MIMA provides, it also captures the VSS (Vehicle Speed Signal), The MAP (Manifold Absolute Pressure), and the TPS (Throttle Position Sensor). From the VSS, we can determine speed and acceleration/deceleration of the vehicle. From MAP we can determine engine loading and derive efficiency. From the TPS, we can determine what the operator wants to do, and how fast he wants it to happen.

PIMA (Programmable IMA) can automatically activate assist and charging in a similar way to the standard IMA action, with one major difference. Assist and charge set points are adjustable as is rate of engagement after crossing the set point. These can all be adjusted in real time while driving.

The programming jack provided with MIMA, along with an inexpensive programming tool and free development system, gives us a cool system that will continue to evolve as we use it and explore different ways to optimize the PIMA software for hyper mileage or hyper performance.
Theory of Operation

MIMA Users Page

MIMA Users Page
Some serious hacking going on here
We now have 170 MIMA systems around the world.
This page is your page. I offer to put up any photos and text that you would like and continue to update it as long as you would like.
I can also set up this page as a blog where the last blog entry is always at the top of the page. We are a small group, so lets communicate about the MIMA system, and the future of the Insight.

The MIMA list in order of serial number.
MIMA 001 Rick R----------------------(SC)
MIMA 002 Yves----------------------(Canada)
MIMA 003 Calpod----------------------(CA)
MIMA 004 thermal pilot---------------(CA)
MIMA 005 Highwater-------------------(OK)
MIMA 006 LoNox 1---------------------(IL)
MIMA 007 James O --------------------(TX)
MIMA 008 JackMPG---------------------(FL)
MIMA 009 JoeMultihuller--------------(CA)
MIMA 010K Predrag---------------------(NY)
MIMA 011 Tyler K---------------------(OH)
MIMA 012 Jdep1-----------------------(PA)
MIMA 013 Armin-----------------------(MA)
MIMA 014K James(Reno)-----------------(NV)
MIMA 015K Jsnable---------------------(CA)
MIMA 016K Artie-----------------------(NY)
MIMA 017 Alex------------------------(CA)
MIMA 018K Nemystic--------------------(MA)
MIMA 019K Johnsn----------------------(OR)
MIMA 020K Chris (Fenrir)-------------(IN)
MIMA 021K Tubesguy--------------------(MI)
MIMA 022K Chisight--------------------(IL)
MIMA 023K Andy G (HafnHaf)------------(VA)
MIMA 024 Ian G (IamIan)--------------(RI)
MIMA 025K Jerry O---------------------(VA)
MIMA 026K Lester M--------------------(IN)
MIMA 027 Paul A-----------------------(UK)(CVT)
Pin replacement:
MIMA 028 Miles G----------------------(CT)
MIMA 029 Andy L-----------------------(IL)
MIMA 030 Eric H-----------------------(NY)
MIMA 031 Jarrod H---------------------(CA)
MIMA 032 John F----(Lightfoot)--------(CT)
MIMA 033 Jason H----------------------(IN)
MIMA 034 Robert L --------------------(CA)
MIMA 035 Mike R-----------------------(OR)
MIMA 036 Peter P----------------------(UK)
MIMA 037 Ken K------------------------(WI)
MIMA 038K Scott R---------------------(CA)
MIMA 039 Jay L------------------------(CA)
MIMA 040 Chuck T----------------------(TX)
MIMA 041K Geoffery R------------------(OH)
MIMA 042 Robert B---------------------(CA)
MIMA 043 Eric P-----------------------(WI)
MIMA 044 Lew P------------------------(WA)
MIMA 045 Ed Z-------------------------(MI)
MIMA 046 John A--------------------(Australia)
MIMA 047 Mark S-----------------------(ID)
MIMA 048 Douglas G--------------------(CA)
MIMA 049 Rebecca G--------------------(KY)
MIMA 050 Dan C------------------------(CA)
MIMA 051 Harry C--------------------(Canada)
MIMA 052 Chris Y----------------------(MA)
MIMA 053 Amin D-----------------------(CA)(CVT)
MIMA 054 Erik S-----------------------(CO)
MIMA 055 Dale H-----------------------(OH)
MIMA 056 Blake B--------------------- (NC)
MIMA 057K Carlton B-------------------(MI)
MIMA 058K Wayne C---------------------(OH)
Plug & Play:
MIMA 059P Scott M---------------------(CT)
MIMA 060P Roger C --------------------(UK)
MIMA 061P Tim M ---------------------(CA)
MIMA 062P Michael S ------------------(CA)
MIMA 063P Joel B ---------------------(UK)
MIMA 064P Mark W ---------------------(AL)
MIMA 065P Tim B ----------------------(MO)
MIMA 066P Eric Z ---------------------(CA)
MIMA 067P Bill H ---------------------(WA)
MIMA 068P Iain C ---------------------(CA)
MIMA 069P Kirk H ---------------------(TX)
MIMA 070P Ron H ----------------------(NY)
MIMA 071P Ken E ----------------------(WA)
MIMA 072P Robert V -------------------(OR)
MIMA 073P Chris S --------------------(MN)
MIMA 074P Kevin D --------------------(LA)
MIMA 075P Todd P ---------------------(BC-Canada)
MIMA 076P Eric M ---------------------(TX)
MIMA 077P Lynn F ---------------------(NM)
MIMA 078P Herman S -------------------(TX)
MIMA 079P Chadwick O -----------------(SC)
MIMA 080P Allert J ----------------(The Netherlands)
MIMA 081P Patrick B ------------------(IL)
MIMA 082P James E --------------------(OH)
MIMA 083P Eric P ---------------------(CT)
MIMA 084P Lowell L ------------------(BC) canada
MIMA 085P John E----------------------(CA)was(CO)
MIMA 086P Sean P----------------------(CT)
MIMA 087P Charles M-------------------(CA)
MIMA 088P Hunter S--------------------(MA)
MIMA 089P Steven S--------------------(MA)
MIMA 090P Gregory B-------------------(VA)
MIMA 091P Michael S-------------------(OH)
MIMA 092P Patrick M-------------------(AZ)
MIMA 093P Robert F--------------------(TX) (CVT)
MIMA 094P Hiroyuki H------------------(Japan)(CVT)
MIMA 095P Paul Andrews second MIMA----(UK)
MIMA 096P Mike E ---------------------(OR)
MIMA 097P Joe G ----------------------(FL)
MIMA 098P Tim B-----------------------(VA)
MIMA 099P Ray H-----------------------(OH)
MIMA 100P James M---------------------(WA)
MIMA 101P Sarah C---------------------(TX)
MIMA 102P Bill D ---------------------(GA)
MIMA 103P Bruce T --------------------(NB Canada) CVT
MIMA 104DIY Jim I --------------------(FL)
MIMA 105P Patrick G ------------------(Qc Canada)
MIMA 106C-L Jim M --------------------(WI)
MIMA 107P Daniel T ---------------------(CA)
MIMA 108P Jack D ---------------------(AR)
MIMA 109P Isuzu R&D ------------------(Japan)
MIMA 110P Art I ----------------------(HI)
*MIMA 111-112DIY Toshikatsu A ---------(Japan)
MIMA 113P Kenji I --------------------(Japan)
MIMA 114P Thomas R -------------------(Switzerland)
MIMA 115P Michael S-------------------(CA)
MIMA 116P David T---------------------(NC)
MIMA 117P Adam F----------------------(AZ)
MIMA 118P Dan S-----------------------(ID)
MIMA 119P David F---------------------(NJ)
MIMA 120P Art W-----------------------(FL)
MIMA 121P Bernd H-------------------(Switzerland CVT)
MIMA 122P Rod A-----------------------(UK)
MIMA 123P Lars K----------------------(TX)
MIMA 124P Don A ----------------------(WA)
MIMA 125P Gene V----------------------(CA)
*MIMA 126DIY Tom F---------------------(NM)
MIMA 127P Jivko A---------------------(NJ)
MIMA 128P Bill P ---------------------(OR)
*MIMA 129DIY Randall S ---------------(CA)
MIMA 130P+ *131DIY Steve H------------(NY)
MIMA 132P Mark B----------------------(Canada)
MIMA 133DIY Matthew G-----------------(NY)
MIMA 134P Andrew C -------------------(CA)
MIMA 135P Gary M ---------------------(TN)
MIMA 136P Steve M---------------------(KS)
MIMA 137P John J----------------------(Denmark)
MIMA 138P John F----------------------(VT)
MIMA 139P Gilbert G ------------------(Qc Canada)
MIMA 140P Joseph D--------------------(NV)
MIMA 141P Aubrey G--------------------(CA)
MIMA 142P Kazuya T--------------------(Japan)
MIMA 143P Takayasu K------------------(Japan)
MIMA 144P Jon W-----------------------(NV)
MIMA 145P Linda H---------------------(ME)
MIMA 146P Sean W----------------------(MN)
MIMA 147P Andrew B--------------------(Australia)
MIMA 148P Rex S-----------------------(AZ)
MIMA 149P Russell C-------------------(CT)
MIMA 150P Sam S-----------------------(NM)
MIMA 151P Brandon B-------------------(MN)
MIMA 152P Andy L----------------------(UK)
MIMA 153P Jeremy B--------------------(NC)
MIMA 154P Anthony P-------------------(MO)
MIMA 155P Mark O----------------------(IL)
MIMA 156P Jay G-----------------------(OH)
MIMA 157P George S--------------------(NY)
MIMA 158P Graham F--------------------(CA)
MIMA 159P Brian M---------------------(NH)
MIMA 160P Robert M--------------------(ON Canada)
MIMA 161P Luke C----------------------(TN)
MIMA 162P Bobby B---------------------(NC)
MIMA 163P Eli P-----------------------(NM)
MIMA 164P Dustin S--------------------(IL)
MIMA 165P Greg M----------------------(Qc Canada)
MIMA 166P Bill N----------------------(VA)
MIMA 167P Gabriel B-------------------(FL
MIMA 168C-L Richard A-----------------(CA)
MIMA 169 DIY David W------------------(NY)
MIMA 170 DIY Robb H ------------------(MN)
MIMA 171P Eli P ----------------------(NM)
MIMA 172P Duane J --------------------(On Canada)
MIMA 173P Mark K----------------------(UT)
MIMA 174P Tim F ----------------------(NY)
MIMA 175P Josh D----------------------(SC)
MIMA 176P Sarah E---------------------(OR)
MIMA 177P Mark S ---------------------(MA)
MIMA 178P Trevor H--------------------(AZ)
MIMA 179P Spence P--------------------(DE)
MIMA 180P Greg R----------------------(NY)
MIMA 181P Jim E-----------------------(VA)
MIMA 182P Michael C-------------------(MN)
MIMA 183P Denis L --------------------(CA)
MIMA 184P Jim T ----------------------(CA)
MIMA 185P Rich C----------------------(IL)
MIMA 186P Bill B ---------------------(Ed Canada)
MIMA 187P Matt L ---------------------(OR)
MIMA 188P Dan C ----------------------(LA)
MIMA 189P Alfred state ---------------(NY)
MIMA 190P Gary G ---------------------(GA)
MIMA 191P Russel C -------------------(CT)
MIMA 192P Nathan B--------------------(UT)
MIMA 193P Robert G -------------------(NY)
MIMA 194P Bruce G --------------------(IN)
MIMA 195P Ed M -----------------------(WI)
MIMA 196P Paul M ---------------------(NH)
MIMA 197P Jim B ----------------------(CA)
MIMA 198P Patrick W-------------------(CA)
MIMA 199P Alan C ---------------------(IA)
MIMA 200p Ray H ----------------------(OH)
MIMA 201p Dan D ----------------------(WA)
MIMA 202p Jerry W --------------------(CA)
MIMA 203p Gene V ---------------------(OR)
MIMA 204p Mike K----------------------(MT)
MIMA 205p Mark W----------------------(WI)
MIMA 206p David H --------------------(VT)
MIMA 207p Scott C---------------------(MN)
MIMA 208p Joe C ----------------------(NJ)
MIMA 209p Aram S ---------------------(OR)
MIMA 210p Will L----------------------(CA)
MIMA 211p Mark V----------------------(CA)
MIMA 212p Mike C----------------------(LA)
MIMA 213p Randal W--------------------(CO)
MIMA 214p Steven C--------------------(Ontario Canada)
MIMA 215p Joel P----------------------(NY)
MIMA 216p Jeff J----------------------(IN)
MIMA 217p Melvin N--------------------(MO)
MIMA 218p Victor M--------------------(MD)
MIMA 219p Douglas S-------------------(HI)

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The MIMA project has generated a lot of interest, and also confusion. This page will try to answer some of the common questions about MIMA.

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Hardwired Harness

Sorry to say, I will not be offering a hardwired harness any longer. The new Plug in Harness will be the only way MIMA will be supplied.
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